We see right through kids. And we know what to do next.

Radiology and diagnostic services at Children’s Minnesota offers a full range of imaging tests that help diagnose an array of health conditions affecting kids — everything from fractures and cardiovascular issues to head injuries and cancer. We work closely with other specialists from every corner of Children’s and beyond to help kids get well.

Technology that fits kids

Kids aren’t just small adults, so our medical equipment is tailored to fit children. We offer more than a dozen types of imaging tests, including:

  • CT (computed tomography) scan—Normally used to look for conditions such as appendicitis, internal bleeding or abnormal growths, a CT scan may require the use of a contrast dye or other substance to improve the visibility of certain tissues.
  • MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)—Using a large magnet and radio waves, MRI scans create three-dimensional images of body tissues.
  • Ultrasound—This test uses high-frequency sound waves to create images of organs and tissues.
  • Bone scan—Using special camera equipment, a bone scan detects problems in the bones such as fractures, infections or other conditions.
  • DEXA (dual energy X-ray absorptiometry) scan—Using an X-ray procedure, a DEXA scan helps measure the strength of a patient’s bones by determining bone density.
  • Barium enema—This test shows how the large intestine is working.
  • GE reflux (milk scan)—This test determines if your child has food or milk coming up from the stomach, known as reflux.
  • Radionuclide cystogram (RNC)—By inserting a catheter into the bladder, this test determines how well the lower urinary tract is working.
  • Renogram—Using special camera equipment, this test looks at kidney function.
  • Upper gastrointestinal series (UGI)—This test examines how the esophagus, stomach and small intestine are working.
  • Video fluoroscope swallow—This test is done to check for problems with swallowing that may interfere with eating or drinking.
  • Voiding cystourethrogram (VCUG) for boys—This test measures how well the bladder and urethra are working in boys.
  • Voiding cystourethrogram (VCUG) for girls—This test measures how well the bladder and urethra are working in girls.
  • Interventional radiology procedures—Minimally invasive image guided procedures for diagnosis and treatment of many diseases and conditions

As an organization dedicated to family-centered care, we also offer many child and family services and resources, like interpretive services.


At Children’s Minnesota, we know how important reliable information about conditions and illnesses is.

About medical imaging: 

Medical imaging generally refers to the technique and process of creating visual representations of the interior of a body for clinical analysis and medical intervention. It is a unique science that utilizes cutting-edge technology to reveal internal structures hidden by the skin and bones, as well as to diagnose and treat disease. Medical imaging also serves to establish a database of normal anatomy and physiology to make it possible to identify abnormalities. 


An xray shows an image of dense substances within the human body. These are primarily bones. However, x-rays can also be useful for spotting tumors, infections and some blood clots. Fluoroscopy is similar to x-ray, but allows the viewer to obtain real-time moving images of internal structures. X-ray and fluoroscopy are invaluable diagnostic tools for medical professionals. They allow doctors to see inside a person without resorting to invasive procedures. 

Computed Tomography (CT)

CT scan is a noninvasive diagnostic imaging test that uses x-rays and a computer to create images of the body. It allows your doctor to view areas such as your spine or brain in slices, as if it were sliced layer-by-layer and a picture taken of each slice. This test can help diagnose tumors, hemorrhages, head injuries, and bone abnormalities. Inside the CT machine, the x-ray tube circles around the patient taking pictures as it rotates. These slices can be viewed two-dimensionally or added back together to create a three-dimensional image of a body structure.